Following another night of parliamentary chaos in London I’m reminded of the (apocryphal) demand by King Henry II of England, complaining about his legal and political troubles with Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1170: “Will no one rid me of this turbulent priest?”. Or as the peoples of Europe might be thinking right now, “Will no one rid us of these turbulent Brits?”.
Faced with four motions to help the United Kingdom extricate itself from its self-made Brexit mess the House of Commons opted instead to choose none of the suggestions as party factions and cross-party factions rallied around their favoured amendments in a circus of legislative buffoonery. No side won, no proposal got through with majority backing and the whole event became an exercise in futility. In the end pretty much the only consistent thing in the Palace of Westminster was the stubborn refusal of the Democratic Unionist Party to support any deal, good, bad or indifferent, as the “guardians of the union” resorted to scorched earth politics in the absence of any better ideas. So, another night of farce mixed with tragedy, with the likelihood of the UK crashing from the European Union looming ever closer.
Where are some overeager knights when you need them?